Clips Round-up for 6/1/12
Read Sunlight Foundation's Bill Allison on the outcome of the John Edwards trial (and here's the Roll Call and NYT analysis), we have some words on whiny billionaires, Common Cause's Bob Edgar has a great op-ed on ALEC in the Wall Street Journal, and a judge has blocked Florida's new restrictions on voter registration drives while the DOJ has demanded the state stop its voter purge.
Campaign Finance/Fair Elections
WaPo: An end run around campaign finance laws
Ruth Marcus looks at the Center to Protect Patient Rights and how shadowy groups are exploiting loopholes in campaign finance to get around disclosing their donors. "This would be laughable — if it were not such a scary illustration of the lengths to which these groups will go to avoid letting voters know who is trying to buy their elections, and the unfortunate likelihood that they will succeed."
NYT: Text donations to 2012
Nice piece on efforts asking the FEC to allow text message campaign contributions (something we support). "In an era of increasing influence by large political donors, regulators and wireless carriers should do more to facilitate participation by the little guy. End the blackout on small text donations."
Bloomberg: Obama campaign fights bid to keep politicial ad donors secret
The Obama campaign is weighing in on American Future Fund's efforts to keep their donors secret. "Obama’s re-election campaign has weighed into the fight by filing a comment letter demanding that the FEC reject the American Future Fund’s request. The conservative group 'knows fully well who it wants to talk about, and knows fully well whom it would be understood to be ‘referring’ to,' said the letter from Robert Bauer, Obama’s top campaign lawyer and former White House counsel. 'It is, of course, President Obama.'"
Politico: Speech, no consequences
Excellent Rick Hasen piece on conservative complaints about transparency and criticism of donors. "The right is now trying to elide the distinction between holding people and organizations accountable for the actions they take and the concept of harassment and intimidation."
CBS News: Super PAC donor lists include few women
"According to the nonpartisan research group the Center for Responsive Politics, as of May 21, about 20 percent of donations to outside groups like super PACs in this election cycle have come from women (among the donations that could be broken down by gender). In dollars, that amounts to $31,165,706 -- however, that includes $15,000,000 in donations from just one person, Miriam Adelson."
NYT: Panel approves bill tailored to a wealthy donor's bank
House Financial Services approves a bill yesterday written to impact a single bank, whose owner is a big campaign donor. "Members of Congress on both sides of the aisle have railed against earmarks, those mysterious clauses tucked into bills that often benefit a single project or constituent. But what about an entire bill, consisting of just a few words, that is intended to help one business — whose owner is a big donor to both parties?"
Politico: Report: WH pushed hard for PhRMA health reform deal
"The Obama administration aggressively pursued the pharmaceutical industry to make a deal in support of health care reform legislation in mid-2009, according to a series of emails released Thursday by Republicans on the House Energy and Commerce Committee." Businessweek.
MSNBC: Buddy Roemer rips "systematic corruption" in campaign finance
Buddy Roemer went on Maddow yesterday to talk about dropping out of the race.
Sunlight: Big donors to Democratic super PACs visited White House
"At least 16 individuals who gave money to some of the major outside spending groups had meetings with White House officials--including Obama himself. "
HuffPost: Mitt Romney's Solyndra attack has a few hitches
The Romney campaign had a bit of a botched visit to Solyndra yesterday, but even though the timing was off (he started speaking at the same time George W. Bush did at his portrait unveiling), he's got some lobbying ties to the company that make the attack hard.
HuffPost: Son Tagg Romney paid by Mitt Romney's gubernatorial campaign for a year after elections
Haha, talk about crony capitalism: "A review by The Huffington Post shows Romney's eldest son, Taggart Romney, collected a salary from his father's campaign as well as the campaign of the newly elected lieutenant governor -- well after their victory."
Bloomberg: Super PAC beneficiary Gingrich laments super PAC influence
"Newt Gingrich, whose quest for the Republican presidential nomination was kept on life support for months by a super-PAC, said in a television interview today that super-PACs are bad for politics."
Reuters: Senate Democratic super PAC raised $1.9 million since March
"Majority PAC, a Super PAC helping Democrats fight for seats in the U.S. Senate, raised $1.9 million in April and May, according to disclosure documents released on Thursday."
NaJo: Nebraska congressman headlining fundraiser for Fischer
"Nebraska Republican Reps. Jeff Fortenberry, Adrian Smith and Lee Terry are headlining a fundraiser for Republican Senate candidate Deb Fischer next Tuesday at the American Trucking Associations. As the invite shows, the ask is $1,000 for hosts, $250 for sponsors and $50 for guests."
NYT: Texas Senate runoff draws big money and heated words
Outside groups are spending big in the Texas Senate race.
Fredricksburg News: Kaine outraises Allen in pre-primary Senate finance filings
"Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Tim Kaine has reported raising $1.2 million between April 1 and May 23 in new campaign finance filings. His likely rival, Republican candidate George Allen, reported raising $742,358 in donations during that period."
Press Herald: Pingree's campaign raises far more funds than rivals
"Democratic U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree raised more money for her re-election campaign than Republicans Jonathan Courtney and Patrick Calder during the most recent campaign finance period, from April 1 to May 23."
Republic Report: Georgia Tea Partiers and progressives united to demand lobbying reform
A lobbying reform referendum in Georgia has broad support.
Journal Sentinel: Walker's office stonewalled DA inquiry record shows
"Milwaukee County prosecutors opened the secret John Doe criminal investigation more than two years ago after being stonewalled by Gov. Scott Walker's office when he was county executive, according to a newly released record."
Alamogordo News: Judge unlocks public financing for 1 candidate; others may get money too
"The New Mexico law that allows public financing for certain candidates will remain alive during the final four days of the primary election campaign. State District Judge Barbara Vigil ruled Thursday that the secretary of state must release $30,533 in public campaign money to one candidate."
AP: Coalition challenges voter ID amendment
"Four groups petitioned the Minnesota Supreme Court on Wednesday to remove from the November ballot a proposed constitutional amendment requiring voters to present photo IDs at the polls, saying the language that voters will see doesn't accurately describe the amendment. "